Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: January 26, 2009 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412964623 | Print ISBN: 9781412936361 | Online ISBN: 9781412964623| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Molefi Kete Asante
Heka is an ancient Egyptian word that meant the action of a complete living force; it was also the name of an Egyptian deity. Yet the word has been confused, misused, and misunderstood because of distorted perspectives from some Westerners, who have claimed that the word Heka is the deification of magic, but that is only a part of the story. The word is literally the activating of the ka . Now it is true that some Egyptians understood heka to work by activation of the ka of a person because the embodied personality of someone's ka had great power and energy. It also includes the use of heka as activation of the ka of the gods. To write the word for the power and the god, one used the same glyphs, which were a twisted piece of flax with raised arms. It resembled snakes entwined and consequently ...